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Wisconsin trucker killed after deer comes through windshield

Over the past 7 days more than 40 deer and bear collisions with vehicles have been reported to the Barron County Sheriff's Department. This included five in a just an hour late Tuesday afternoon. (Photo courtesy Rice Lake Online)

The Trucker News Services

11/22/2013

Editor's note: article courtesy of Rice Lake Online

A Chetek, Wis., man died Wednesday from injuries he sustained in a two-vehicle/deer collision early Tuesday.

Over the past 7 days more than 40 deer and bear collisions with vehicles have been reported to the Barron County Sheriff's Department. This included five in a just an hour late Tuesday afternoon.

Jacob Haas, 35, was behind the wheel of a Jennie-O big rig on Highway 8 traveling westbound just east of Turtle Lake shortly after 4 a.m. when a deer came through the driver's side of the truck's windshield and continued all the way through the cab, exiting out the back window.

The dispatch report stated that Haas appeared to have sustained severe head trauma. First responders were called in from Turtle Lake and Cumberland to extricate Haas, who was airlifted by helicopter after about an hour and 15 minutes and taken to Regions Hospital in St. Paul where he died Wednesday afternoon.

Haas's truck was discovered in the ditch alongside the road when authorities arrived at the scene of a call for help from Brianna Kandler, 18, of Chippewa Falls, whose car hit a deer as she traveled east on Highway 8. There was no report of injuries to Kandler.

It's not known whether both vehicles struck the same deer. The accident remains under investigation by the Sherriff's Department and the State Patrol.

From the period of last Wednesday through Tuesday, the department has handled 44 deer or bear related incidents with vehicles.

Dispatch logs show that nearly half the accidents took place in the early evening hours between 4 and 9 p.m. Another 25 percent happened in the early morning hours between 4 and 8 a.m. The remaining 25 percent were split almost evenly between mid-day and late night hours.

The Almena area has seen the greatest number of such accidents in the past week with six. Another four took place in the nearby Cumberland Township. Oak Grove also had four.

Not all collisions occurred in rural areas. Rice Lake has had three in the past week. Cumberland and Chetek each had one.

A large majority of the accidents took part on state or county highways, including six on Highway 63.

Both accidents involving bears took place during evening hours Monday. One happened in Barron on Highway W west of 19th Street at 7:49 p.m. and the other, in Oak Grove just west of  Highways V and M intersection at 9:15 p.m.

Rice Lake Online: www.ricelakeonline.com

The Trucker staff can be reached to comment on this article at editor@thetrucker.com.

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